News from Online—Plants and Photosynthesis - …
The scientific challenges are clear and can, and should, be tackled. However, as moderator Jan Huitema MEP pointed out during the final discussion: we also need to have the right policies in place to be assured of success – and we need to be able to engage the breeding industry on the one hand while on the other, ensuring that developing countries who have the greatest need for food security can properly benefit. The complexity should not be underestimated and must be included in any future programme design. Citizen engagement from the outset is also paramount and must become an integral component to ensure ultimate success. The photosynthesis race is on. All eyes are now on the EC to pick up the baton to allow European scientists to provide the necessary level of input required to boost food security issues and especially in those regions where it is most desperately needed.
Scientists Are Rewriting the History of Photosynthesis | WIRED
Led by senior author Antoni Barrientos, Ph.D., associate professor of neurology and biochemistry and molecular biology, the researchers discovered that the activity of a conserved yeast cytochrome c oxidase translational activator and assembly factor is regulated by heme B, defining a homeostatic mechanism that links the formation and activity of the respiratory chain to the availability of oxygen via the oxygen-regulated heme biosynthetic pathway. Their study, “A Heme-Sensing Mechanism in the Translational Regulation of Mitochondrial Cytochrome c Oxidase Biogenesis,” described the first case of heme-mediated oxygen sensing in mitochondria, defined as the “powerhouse” because it generates most of the cell’s energy supply in the form of adenosine triphosphate.
Current high-throughput genetic, chemical and physiological screening approaches are now ripe for exploitation. These now offer unique novel opportunities to link photosynthetic physiology to genetics and hence open the way towards targeted breeding strategies delivering improved varieties with enhanced photosynthetic potential. Fundamental science is needed in association with translation into practice and hence linking up to current initiatives such as that supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has clear value and will significantly broaden current perspectives as required to meet the enormity of the goals envisaged.